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China warns US not to allow Taiwan stopover
by Staff Writers
Beijing (AFP) Oct 27, 2017

China urged the United States Friday to prevent Taiwanese president Tsai Ing-wen from making a stopover in American territory during her upcoming visit to three Pacific allies.

The statement followed reports that Tsai will transit through Hawaii and the U.S. territory of Guam next week -- a trip that comes at a delicate time with President Donald Trump slated to visit Beijing in November.

"As for the Taiwan leader stopover in US territory, her true motives for transiting by the US is self-evident," Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said during a regular press briefing.

"We hope that the United States would abide strictly by the 'one China' policy... deny her permission to stopover, avoid sending the wrong signals to Taiwan independence forces and take concrete actions to preserve the overall state of US-China relations."

Starting Saturday, Tsai will visit the Marshall Islands, Tuvalu and the Solomon Islands, which are among just 20 of the nations worldwide that recognise Taiwan as a country.

Beijing has been wooing other countries to dump Taiwan, which it sees as part of its territory to be brought back into its fold at some point.

The two sides split after a civil war in 1949, and while Taiwan sees itself as a sovereign nation, it has never formally declared independence.

The island has been a thorny issue in China-US relations, as Trump began his transition into office by taking a precedent-breaking phone call from Tsai.

He mended ties by vowing to uphold the 'one China' policy shortly before Chinese President Xi Jinping's visit to his Florida Mar-a-Lago resort, but infuriated Beijing again this summer by approving a $1.3 billion arms sale to Taiwan.

Tsai's last visit was to Central American allies in January, during which she made stopovers in the US.

Beijing had asked Washington then to bar Tsai from flying through US airspace, but the request was ignored.

Taiwan leader hopes for 'breakthrough' with China
Taipei (AFP) Oct 26, 2017
Taiwan's president Tsai Ing-wen said Thursday that the end of China's landmark party congress signals an "opportunity for change," as she called for dialogue with Chinese leader Xi Jinping. Tsai was speaking publicly for the first time since Xi was handed a second term during the 19th Communist Party meeting that concluded this week, which cemented the Chinese president's grip on power. ... read more

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